In Reply to: Re: Exhaust manifold connecting bolts posted by Paul Ikeda on August 29, 2001 at 03:38:32:
You make some good points here -- most auto-supply fasteners are crap. Just for the hell of it, I looked up Aircraft Spruce and a couple of other places that sell aircraft bolts (AN/NAS, all that good stuff) but they do not seem to have metric. (Just stuff to use on your English race cars!)
So, I am on a personal quest to find a good supply of metric-sized quality bolts. I will post to the board when I find out anything.
I'd be verrry careful about driving the car with missing exhaust studs. Apparently the gaskets have a tendency to blow out as well, and if that happens, you might be looking at burned valves. Others on this board will have more experience than I, but proceeding with caution is probably a good thing. Might also be worth a call to your local ///M mechanic to get his opinion.
By the way, I also have experience buying bolts from the dealer for my car -- and I agree that the prices are BS, but at least the quality is good...much better than the stuff at the local Grand Auto.
Does anyone know what size these bolts are? My local dealer was absolutely no help, except to tell me they had them in stock for $3/each! It seems to me that 1) that's kind of expensive for something I could get at a hardware store for $.10, and 2) kind of a long way to drive to get it (they're across town from me).
I was finally able to get under the car to see the manifold (I was moving last week and didn't really have the time), and discovered there are 3 of them missing!! I know from reading the posts here that this is common, but this seems kind of crazy! Also, now that I see them, it seems like a kind of crappy set up. Has anyone replaced these with a different style of bolt that doesn't fall out or come loose?
Finally, I'm wondering how bad it is for the engine to drive it like this. It makes an awful noise, but I don't know what if any damage I may be doing in the interim. As a precaution, I've stopped driving it other than when I have no option not to, but I was just curious if I should park it until these bolts are replaced.
Thanks for any input you may have!!
I believe the studs are 4 mm and the nuts are 9mm split copper flanged.
You can't just run down to Kragens or Grand Auto to buy this type of hardware. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and go to the dealer as the hardware on our cars is very specialized. For example, do you really think you can get 46mm front stub axle nut at your local hardware store??
If you have one or two nuts missing I don't think it is too much of a problem, but I would get it tended to ASAP. When I repaired mine I had 2 nuts and studs missing from #1 cylinder. It is a real pain to tighten these nuts up, but you can do it with a 1/4 in drive socket wrench and a combination 9mm wrench.
Make sure to lift up the front end of the car so you can work your arms up into the engine bay. No doubt make sure your engine is over night cold before doing this.